Mr. and Mrs. North: A Good Buy
Pam buys a replica antique chest at an auction, but gets more than she bargained for when she and Jerry open it and home and find a corpse inside.
Season 1, Episode 3 (1952)
August 22, 2014
Mr. and Mrs. North
The series “Mr. and Mrs. North” is based on the lives of a publisher Jerry North and his housewife Pamela, who investigates murders that they stumble upon every week. Although they are amateur detectives, this ordinary couple actually end up solving mysteries before the cops do. Jerry is played by Richard Denning, while Pamela is played by Barbara Britton. This television series has been categorized as a murder mystery as well as a comedy throughout its history. It was a unique show, in which it combined two very diverse genres into one television show. The show ran for 2 seasons, which in total included 58 episodes, with each show around 30 minutes in length. It was produced by John W. Loveton and directed by Ralph Francis Murphy. The theme music was composed by John A. Rarig. It aired the first season on CBS from 1952 through 1953, and in 1954 it aired the second season on NBC. The series was sponsored by Revlon Cosmetics. The original airdate was on Friday, October 3, 1952. Throughout the first season, each upcoming episode ran every Friday at 10:00pm EST. However, for the second season, each episode ran every Tuesday at 10:30pm EST. The last episode of it’s second and final season aired on May 25, 1954.
In this episode of “Mr. and Mrs. North: A Good Buy” the plot begins with Pamela at an auction house trying to buy an antique chest. The value of the chest increases when another woman tries to desperately buy the chest from Pamela for double what she payed for, but Pamela reluctantly refuses. Once Pamela returns home to her husband, Jerry is furious because he doesn’t believe that chest was worth so much, even more so that Pamela didn’t sell the chest at a higher price when she had the chance. Once they opened the chest however, both Jerry and Pamela are shocked to find a dead body inside the chest. The dead corpse was actually the same women who tried to buy the chest from Pamela. A detective then discovers a hidden compartment within the chest that contained smuggled diamonds. Mr. and Mrs. North then try to figure out who killed the woman and why? The husband of the murdered wife was first accused of her death, however, Pamela and Jerry become hostage to the real killer, the auction owner. Notably, Pamela took charge of this investigation and almost single-handily solved the mystery. This was achieved by her intuition and outside-the-box thinking.
Before the television series, “Mr. & Mrs. North” was a radio mystery series, which aired from 1942 to 1954. It was broadcasted on NBC radio from 1942 through 1946. The series was then broadcasted on CBS radio from 1947 through 1954. When this series began, Joseph Curtin had the role of Mr. North, while Alice Frost had the role of Mrs. North. The radio series actually started out as a light comedy about a normal couple who lived in Greenwich Village. However, once it added a mystery aspect to the next season, it boosted ratings as a result, eventually reaching 20 million listeners. It was such a hit, that it even rivaled the popular top detective show, “Mr. District Attorney,” for ratings. The couple would make light-hearted wisecracks as they stepped over dead bodies, which exemplified the fusion of humor and drama. The first episode in this series that was broadcasted was on December 30, 1942. This radio series received the first Best Radio Drama Edgar Award from the Mystery Writers of America.
July 6, 2014
Barbara Britton and Richard Denning in "Mr. and Mrs. North"
A good episode of "Mr. and Mrs. North." Barbara Britton and Richard Denning do well in their respective lead roles. Look for Carolyn Jones in the first third of the video trying to buy an auction item from Mrs. North. The "Mr. and Mrs. North" series lasted much longer on radio than when it transitioned to radio. This six decade old video has good audio and visual.